How to Flatten a Rug

If you have ever bought a new rug or moved an old one, you know how to flatten a rug is frustrating, and those wrinkles, creases, bumps and curled corners upset.

A rug that does not lie flat not only looks unsightly, but also poses a tripping hazard and can damage the rug fibers over time. Fortunately, there are some simple and effective ways on how to flatten a rug and make it look smooth and beautiful.

This article provides helpful insights on how to flatten a rug with different methods, depending on the type and condition of your rug.

How to Flatten a Rug

with Creases

One of the most common problems with rugs is creasing, which occurs when the rug is folded or rolled for storage or shipping. Crease can make your rug look uneven and unattractive, and can also affect its durability. To get rid of creases, you need to relax the rug fibers and smooth out the surface. Here are some steps to follow:

  • Unroll or unfold your rug and lay it flat on the floor, preferably on a hard surface.
  • Use weights, such as books, furniture or heavy objects, to hold down the edges and corners of the rug. This will help prevent curling and keep the rug in place.
  • Use a handheld steamer or an iron on a low heat setting to gently steam the rug from the backside. Do not press the iron directly on the rug material, as this can damage it. Instead, hover the iron over the rug or use a damp cloth as a barrier. Steam the entire rug, paying special attention to the creased areas.
  • Let the rug cool down completely before removing the weights. You can also use a fan or a hair dryer to speed up the drying process.
  • If there are still some creases left, repeat the process until they are gone.

After Washing

Washing your rug can help remove dirt, stains and odors, but it can also cause your rug to shrink, stretch or wrinkle. To avoid these problems, you should always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for washing your rug and use gentle detergents and cold water. You should also avoid using a dryer or hanging your rug to dry, as this can cause more damage. Instead, you should dry your rug flat on the floor or on a clean surface. Here are some tips to flatten your rug after washing:

  • After rinsing your rug thoroughly, squeeze out as much water as possible by rolling it in a towel or using a squeegee.
  • Lay your rug flat on the floor or on a clean surface, such as a tarp or a sheet. Make sure there are no folds or wrinkles on the rug.
  • Use weights, such as books, furniture or heavy objects, to hold down the edges and corners of the rug. This will help prevent curling and keep the rug in shape.
  • Let your rug air dry completely before removing the weights. You can also use a fan or a hair dryer to speed up the drying process.
  • If your rug is still wrinkled after drying, you can use a steamer or an iron on a low heat setting to smooth out the surface.

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That Got Wet

Sometimes, your rug can get wet accidentally due to spills, leaks or floods. This can cause your rug to swell, shrink or wrinkle, depending on the type and quality of your rug material. To prevent mold growth and permanent damage, you should act quickly and dry your rug as soon as possible. Here are some steps to flatten your rug that got wet:

  • Blot up as much water as possible from your rug using towels or paper towels. Do not rub or scrub your rug, as this can damage it.
  • Lift your rug off the floor and place it on a clean surface, such as a tarp or a sheet. Make sure there are no folds or wrinkles on the rug.
  • Use weights, such as books, furniture or heavy objects, to hold down the edges and corners of the rug. This will help prevent curling and keep the rug in shape.
  • Use fans or dehumidifiers to circulate air around your rug and speed up the drying process. You can also use a hair dryer on a low heat setting to dry your rug faster.
  • If your rug is still wrinkled after drying, you can use a steamer or an iron on a low heat setting to smooth out the surface.

On Carpet

If you want to layer your rug on top of a carpet, you may face some challenges with keeping your rug flat and smooth. A rug on carpet can move, slide or bunch up due to foot traffic, furniture or vacuuming. This can create wrinkles, bumps, and folds on your rug, which can ruin its appearance and cause tripping hazards. To flatten your rug on carpet, you need to secure your rug to the carpet and prevent it from moving. Here are some ways to do that:

  • Use a rug pad or a non-slip mat under your rug to create friction and grip between your rug and the carpet. This will help keep your rug in place and prevent it from sliding or shifting.
  • Use double-sided carpet tape to adhere your rug to the carpet. Apply the tape to the back of your rug along the edges and corners, and press it firmly onto the carpet. This will help flatten your rug and prevent it from curling or wrinkling.
  • Use furniture or heavy objects to weigh down your rug on the carpet. Place them on the edges and corners of your rug, or on the areas that tend to wrinkle or bunch up. This will help smooth out your rug and keep it in shape.

Corner

One of the most annoying problems with rugs is when the corners curl up or flip over. This can make your rug look unattractive and pose a tripping hazard. Curling corners can be caused by various factors, such as poor quality, humidity, foot traffic, furniture or vacuuming. To flatten a rug corner, you need to relax the rug fibers and restore their shape. Here are some methods to try:

  • Flip your rug over and curl the corners under in the opposite direction. Leave them like that for a day or two, or until they flatten out.
  • Use a steamer or an iron on a low heat setting to gently steam the corners of your rug from the backside. Do not press the iron directly on the rug material, as this can damage it. Instead, hover the iron over the rug or use a damp cloth as a barrier. Steam the corners until they relax and lie flat.
  • Use double-sided carpet tape to adhere the corners of your rug to the floor. Apply the tape to the back of your rug along the corners, and press it firmly onto the floor. This will help flatten your corners and prevent them from curling up again.
  • Use weights, such as books, furniture or heavy objects, to hold down the corners of your rug. Leave them like that for a day or two, or until they flatten out.
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FAQs

What is the fastest way to flatten a rug?

The fastest way to flatten a rug depends on the type and condition of your rug, but generally speaking, using heat and pressure can help speed up the process. You can use a steamer or an iron on a low heat setting to gently steam your rug from the backside. Then use weights, such as books, furniture or heavy objects, to hold down the edges and corners of your rug. You can also use a hair dryer on a low heat setting to dry your rug faster after steaming or washing.

How do you flatten a bumpy rug?

A bumpy rug can be caused by various factors, such as poor quality, humidity, foot traffic, furniture or vacuuming. To flatten a bumpy rug, you need to smooth out the surface and restore its shape. You can use a handheld steamer or an iron on a low heat setting to gently steam your rug from the backside, paying special attention to the bumpy areas. You can also use a comb or a brush to rake out the bumps and fluff up the fibers.

How do you get ripples out of an area rug?

Ripples are similar to wrinkles or creases on an area rug, which occur when the rug is folded or rolled for storage or shipping. To get ripples out of an area rug, you need to relax the rug fibers and smooth out the surface. You can use a handheld steamer or an iron on a low heat setting to gently steam your rug from the backside, focusing on the rippled areas. You can also use weights, such as books, furniture or heavy objects, to hold down the edges and corners of your rug.

How long does it take for a rug to flatten?

The time it takes for a rug to flatten depends on several factors, such as the type and quality of your rug material, the severity of the wrinkles or creases, and the method you use to flatten it. Generally speaking, it can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days for a rug to flatten completely. Some rugs may require more than one treatment or method to achieve optimal results.

Final Thought

Flattening a rug is not a difficult task if you know what to do and what tools to use. By following our guide on how to flatten a rug with different methods, you can make your rug look smooth and beautiful, and also prevent it from wrinkling or curling again. Whether you have a new or an old rug, a cotton or a wool rug, a wet or a dry rug, or a rug on carpet or on hard floor, there is a solution for every situation. All you need is some patience, some heat, some pressure, and some creativity.

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